Friday, August 29th, 2008
Book Review: The Kissing Hand
Here’s a story for toddlers heading off for their first day with a babysitter, daycare or preschool.
The Kissing Hand by Audrey Penn is a picture book about a young raccoon reluctantly starting his first night at school (he’s nocturnal after all). In this case, "school" is a giant tree populated by adolescent forest animals of all types who get taught by a wise owl.
The raccoon’s mother explains to her son the fun he will have â€” making new friends, playing with new toys, reading new books and so forth.
Then Mom entrusts him with a "very old secret" she learned from her mother. Mom takes her son’s paw and kisses it, filling him with warm fuzzies.
She explains, "Now whenever you feel lonely and need a little loving from home, just press your hand to your cheek and think, ‘Mommy loves you. Mommy loves you.’ And that very kiss will jump to your face and fill you with toasty warm thoughts."
The boy then goes to school comforted by his kissing hand, but before he departs, he kisses his mother’s hand so she too will have him close by her during his absence.
Now, I can’t say this story worked for my 4-year-old daughter because she’s naturally excited at the prospect of doing anything without a parent attached at the hip. However, if your kid is clingy, give it a look.
I picked my copy up at a garage sale (an excellent source for mint condition Scholastic books). You can find it at Amazon as well.